We are the first girls soccer team in Sky View history that has actually taken the first-place trophy. —Bobcats head coach Sharron Wood
SANDY — If there is one word that has defined Sky View Bobcats girls soccer this season, it is team. They have succeeded as a team and they have failed as a team. It was no different Saturday morning at Rio Tinto Stadium in the 4A state championship game.
The Bobcats controlled all three facets of the game, the ultimate example of team play, against the Bonneville Lakers en route to a historic 2-0 victory.
“We are the first girls soccer team in Sky View history that has actually taken the first-place trophy,” said Bobcats head coach Sharron Wood. “The girls love this game, they love each other and they played together. This win just shows everybody, in (Cache) Valley and in the state, that we have good soccer players. This win wins a lot.”
“Oh my, it is so amazing,” Sky View goalkeeper Kelsea Cracroft added. “We worked so hard for this. We knew it was coming. We came together (as a team), started from the bottom and worked our way here. It is just the best feeling ever.”
Saturday’s game featured a great deal of the work touted by Wood and Cracroft. The Lakers, Region 11 champions, eked their way into the title game with overtime wins over Snow Canyon and Logan but proved to be a difficult opponent for the Bobcats.
During the initial 20 minutes of play, the teams played each other to almost a standstill, with each set of midfielders refusing to give way to the other.
The Lakers even had a few shots at the goal, including an attempt by Tessa Ulrich that sailed wide of Cracroft’s net.
An attempt by Darcy Woodward, midway through the half, seemed to usher in an entirely new contest.
From that point on, the Bobcats controlled the game. Over the final 20 minutes of the first half, Sky View had at least six shot attempts.
“The ball was bouncing around, everyone was just fighting for it and it popped out to me,” said Tippetts. “I just put the ball in the back post for the score.”
Trailing by a goal, the Lakers flipped the script again, putting considerable pressure on the Sky View defense for most of the second half.
Isabel Togisala led the way with at least four shots on goal, but all were turned away by Cracroft.
“She is an amazing keeper,” Wood said. “I’m just so proud of her. She has stepped up and taken that role as the leader of the team.”
Cracroft deflected all praise of her performance. “It’s not hard when you know you have a team with you, a team that proved all year you can do it.”
Sky View added one final score, icing on the cake, with two minutes left in the contest when Barlow drilled a shot past Croyle.
From there, all that was left was to wait for the clock to strike zero.
“It was chilling,” Cracroft said of the final countdown toward the end of the game. “I had chills. I can’t believe this moment came. (Winning the state title) is just the best feeling ever.”
“It is so amazing,” Tippetts added.